Story Cube Game for Learning to Read

We came up with these story cubes as an activity to help my child learn to read.   They are a mix between Rory’s Story Cubes (they were featured in our last Toy Guide) and Bob’s Books.   We use a mixture of Bob Books, Progressive Phonics and the free printables at Hubbard’s Cupboard for our reading curriculum with our preschool and kindergarten kiddos.   Currently, we are looking for a way to extend the reading lessons as we are waiting for the next stage of Bob Books to arrive.     Hence, extra reading practice with story cubes.   The kids love rolling the dice to create new sentences with familiar words.   I think the repetition of words in the cubes helps them develop both their reading speed and confidence.

story cube game fore reading

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What you need to make your own Story Cubes:

  • 5-6 Blocks – you can use more if you want to add complication
  • Painter’s tape (so you can remove the tape and replace the words at whim)
  • Permanent marker
  • Bob’s Books (or Progressive Phonics, both have repetitive words)

story cube game fore reading.

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Pick six names or nouns, write them on one block, pick 6 sight words and write them on two additional blocks, write 6 different action words on another block and on the final block write 6 nouns.   Once we created our blocks, my younger preschooler would roll the blocks and my older preschooler would put the sentence in order (with my help) and read it to us.   Don’t have Bob Books or have a child obsessed with a particular movie/narrative?   Adapt the blocks to fit their interests.

story cube game fore reading

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Words I put on my sentence blocks:

Block 1 –

  • Sam
  • Dot
  • Mac
  • Jig
  • Mit
  • Peg

Blocks 2 & 3 –

  • is/was
  • on/in
  • the
  • has/had
  • a
  • with

Block 4 –

  • sat
  • ran
  • got
  • win
  • hid
  • tug

Block 5 –

  • mat
  • mud
  • bag
  • box
  • rag
  • hat

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Have you made any learning manipulatives to help your kids read?

I would love to hear about them!

Other posts you might be interested in:

28 Comments

  1. I’m sure we’ll be using this idea soon. I actually got some blocks to do that with pictures, but I think I’ll wait until they can read some.

  2. That’s a really cool idea, R. Our two year old, of course, isn’t up to words just yet, but perhaps we could do pictures like Ticia said. As ever I’m in awe of your creativity. Have a great evening.

    –Michael

  3. Great idea! My 4-year-old likes Jon Scieszka’s Shuffle Stories, so I know he’d love this too.

  4. What an excellent way to help children with their reading. And it’s all about making learning fun for the child…no better way.

    Well done for being innovative.

  5. Great idea! I did this activty using unifix cubes. You can use a sharpie mark to write the words and connect them to one another.

  6. We’ve been making and sharing StoryCubes using simple card/paper templates we designed for many years now (we actually manufacture and sell them in packs too) : http://storycubes.net
    They’ve proved really popular in schools and learning projects as well as in community/inter-generational settings too. We’ve also published several hundred cubes on our diffusion website (where we also publish free downloadable book titles) which can all be downloaded and printed out for free:
    http://diffusion.org.uk/?cat=9

    More recently we’ve created a simple website for people to upload images/words to create their own personalised StoryCubes – http://bookleteer.com – its free to join and we’d love to see people make their own cube designs – feel free to sign up and try it out.

  7. I love this. You’ve always got something to make learning fun!

  8. This is awesome. It is so much more fun than using sentence strips. Thanks for linking it to Read.Explore.Learn.

  9. This is a great hands on learning for teaching reading. I will be make my group a set.

  10. A fantastic hands-on idea for reading! You could also use printable cube templates if you didn’t have any blocks on hand.

  11. That’s great. I had looked at some premade unifix cubes but I didn’t like that they were premade with the words that they had chosen. This is a great idea and I like that you can redo them with new words. I think you could do it with letters and do making words activities too.

  12. Nice! I have some wooden blocks like these. This idea would work for a lot of beginning reader books.

  13. This is a great idea. I think I will adapt it to help teach the alphabet and graduate on to this in time. So far we have been using techniques including alphabet toys and alphabet frieze decorations to build a good foundation. Thanks for the inspiration.

  14. What a really cool concept – I can’t wait to do this when my toddler gets to this stage!

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